The Seagulls have outlasted Souths Magpies 10-8 in an intense Round 15 In Safe Hands Cup clash at Davies Park.
Davies Park is usually a tranquil part of Brisbane's inner southern suburbs on a Sunday afternoon, but that silence was broken by one of the most thunderous games of rugby league between two packs that did not halt hostilities until the final whistle.
The first half resembled a heavyweight bout as numbers eight to 17 took turns charging and scrapping for every inch of the field; trying to gain the upper hand.
The respect between both sides was apparent as no matter how hard they pulverised each other, not a hand was raised in anger and high shots were rare.
It was end-to-end footy. Line drop outs were forced and completion rates were higher than usual. Never has halftime come quick enough than in this game as 34 weary players and mentally drained coaching staff headed to the sheds with not a point being scored.
"I asked the boys to keep on doing what they have been doing over the past month," Souths coach Steven Bretherton said when asked about the halftime chat. "Compete really well and keep turning up and defending our try line."
Seagulls coach Ron Troutman was proud of his side's defensive efforts.
"We defended very well and kept turning up on our line," he said. "We were keeping them in the game to be honest and we had errors and they kept moving us around which we have been trying to work on ourselves."
Back-to-back penalties in the 48th minute gave Souths the opportunity to wake up the scorers, ending the deadlock with Sato Keta-Opo slotting the penalty goal.
Souths might have drawn first blood, but it was the Seagulls who managed to score the first four-pointer of the day, with Kalolo Saitaua producing a try from dummy half to give the Seagulls a 6-2 lead.
Minutes later, the Seagulls allowed a mid-field torpedo to bounce, leading to Pies winger Shaiquan Terekia regathering the ball and then turning it inside to Bernard Mosby to glide over and score the converted try, putting Souths back in front.
The Seagulls were boosted by the inclusion of Cup star Mitchell Frei, who produced a well-weighted kick that bounced into the hands of centre Brad Mana.
He reached over to regather and score out wide what would be the match-winning try in the 72nd.
"I have learnt over the years that the Magpies don't go away," Seagulls coach Troutman said. "You give them enough football and field position they're going to get excited and they're going to come at you hard."
Elsewhere in Round 15 action, the West Brisbane Panthers held onto their competition lead with an emphatic 38-12 win over defending champs Valleys, while the Redcliffe Dolphins snapped back into form after consecutive losses by defeating the Tigers 46-10.
In Safe Hands Cup Round 15 Results
Panthers 38 (Sam Collins 2, Ethan Bullemor 2, Jordan Riki, Troy Swift, Kyle Van Klaveren tries; Kyle Van Klaveren 5 goals) defeated Diehards 12 (Joe McGuire, Ethan Quad-Ward tries; Jordan Mitchell goal, Jacob Kelly goal)
Dolphins 46 (Rinsma Saueha 2, Justice Utateo, Will Partridge, Josh Fauid, Bailey Butler, Samson Graham, Jordan Pinnock tries; Reece Braun 7 goals) defeated Tigers 10 (James Salter, Jack Anderson tries; Brandon Downey goal)
Seagulls 10 (Kalolo Saitaua, Bradley Mana tries; John Te Reo goal) defeated Magpies 8 (Bernard Mosby try; Sato Keta-Opo 2 goals)
|In Safe Hands Cup Ladder|
* John Devine is a QRL correspondent covering the BRL A Grade competition